Witnessing the amalgamation of culture and festivities as Dubai embraces the holy month of Ramadan is truly an amazing sight. The city’s innovative options for the meal that breaks the fast – the iftar – aren’t just a treat for the those fasting, but also for visitors and expats. From customised tents and floating ships to irresistible skyline views and traditional Arabian setups, here are some of best iftar experiences you can have in Dubai.
Be unique this Ramadan and head to the famous Dubai Opera which transforms into a magnificent banquet hall for iftar. The celebrated restaurant, Sean Connolly, caters for iftar by presenting classic Arab dishes with a modern twist. There are also live stations, desserts, and juices. Fall in love with the chic interior and delicious food options while enjoying an evening of gastronomy, culture, and elegance.
Savour a four-course Thai meal comprising seafood, curries, meat varieties and a selection of desserts at Thiptara, where guests can choose from an set menu buffet or à la carte options for iftar. Visitors can enjoy their fine dining experience while taking in the spectacular view of Burj Lake and the fountain show. This venue oozes luxury and the authentic Thai delicacies will definitely please all guests.
It’s never a bad idea to indulge in a healthy and hearty meal. Known for its casual vibe and a nutritive take on food, The Daily serves an array of salads, healthy mains and Arab cuisine essentials for iftar. Expect a generous dose of mixed grilled veggies, couscous salad, lamb ouzi, fattoush and much more. Keeping the Ramadan spirit of charity alive, The Daily has tied up with Mawaheb, an studio for adults with special needs. So, every time a guest dines here, they will get a voucher for a free iftar which can be shared with friends or family or simply donated to one person from Mawaheb. All in all, a truly good meal.
Hosting the first floating iftar in Dubai’s newest iconic addition, Queen Elizabeth 2 is making waves again with an extravagant Arabian-style buffet comprising live cooking stations, Emirati dishes, mezze, salads, drinks, and an array of desserts displayed on the ship’s largest deck. Guests can choose between enjoying their iftar in the purpose-built majlis or at the Lido restaurant. This heritage attraction lures visitors by representing maritime history, making iftar time seem like a dive into history.
La Mer has become one of the most bustling areas of Dubai, with ample eateries and activities to keep guests thoroughly entertained throughout. Award-winning chef Hari Nayak presents his Indian fusion picks at Masti. Imagine tasting the blend of global dishes and tantalising Indian flavours in a modern environment with elements of classic Indian design. The set menu for iftar includes dishes such as edamame chaat, tempered green peas, ricotta kofta, kheema popsicle, masti paella and much more.
Treat yourself with Middle Eastern delights served inside a quintessential Arabian tent. The tent is specially designed for the holy month of Ramadan with decor inspired by Islamic culture – flowy curtains, luxury carpets, glass lanterns, and more. Fairuz offers guests a comfortable dining experience combined with superior hospitality. Guests can choose from al fresco and à la carte options in the Arabian Courtyard. Cutting through the meat dishes, making way to the warm manakeesh sprinkled with Arabic herbs, and then moving to the sauteed grills and rice preparations, visitors can conclude their meal with delectable dessert choices.
Take a journey to Turkey and dive into a flavoursome meal inspired by the Ottoman era. The exotic decor of Lalezar and the meat dishes, along with mezze, salads, juices, and desserts, make for a memorable iftar meal. The elaborate buffet and the much talked about Turkish-style hospitality has been drawing visitors and locals alike. Wall carvings, marble-inspired art, minarets, wooden furniture, and antique chandeliers are sure to transport you to charming Turkish territory.
Curious to know about the significance of Ramadan and the traditions associated with it? The Sheikh Mohammed Centre for Cultural Understanding (SMCCU) invites people to learn about Emirati culture during its annual gathering, an evening that begins with the practice of athan (call to prayer) and is followed by fast-breaking rituals and a wholesome iftar spread. Visitors are free to ask questions about Ramadan and its related customs. This drill also allows guests to visit Diwan Mosque and comprehend the purpose of the holy month in a deeper way.
The two-storey tent at The Dallah Lounge will certainly leave diners spoilt for choice. Located in the heart of the Emirates Golf Club, this venue offers extensive iftar options that range from dishes like lamb ouzi and roast beef to classic assortments of dates and Arabian sweets. Easy on the pocket and family friendly, The Dallah Lounge a hassle-free option for many.
Serving up ‘the world in one platter’, the JW Marriott Marquis offers everything, from classic spices to rich global flavours, with the added glamour of being situated atop the second tallest hotel in the world. The iftar at Kitchen 6 guarantees its guests an international treat through six interactive cooking stations with a selection of experienced chefs present. The plush modern interior offers a contemporary and luxurious experience, allowing visitors to appreciate a wholesome evening with loved ones.
One of the most popular locations to experience iftar in a tent is The Majlis at the Dubai World Trade Centre. This place overwhelms its visitors with a lavish display of Emirati, Levantine and Asian cuisines. Made in Arabesque fashion, The Majlis is known for its lounge areas and VIP gazebos that are perfect for those who want to enjoy iftar in a more private setting. Guests can avail discounts when booking online.